Title: World Clash Tour 2006
Archive: STN, Bask in the Sapphyness
Summary: "...Snitch grabbed his microphone. "Take THIS, Britney and Madonna!" He shouted, dipping Skittery low and pressing their mouths together."
Disclaimer: No owning here. Except the song. That freaking song is MINE.
The World Clash Tour was created in 2004 as an attempt to bring "clashing" band together; an attempt to remove the idea that a person could only like one genre of music. The first tour had artists like Christina Aguilera, Blink 182, Sum 41, Pink, Rascall Flatts, Eminem... all performing together on one night. Three songs each, then later, a battle of the bands, then even later, a 'CMT Crossroads' type thing, where some bands would play together, or sing each other's songs.
A fun time, to say the least.
A bunch of new bands would get their start as opening acts for the tour, hoping to later go along as one of the headliners.
Only two of them were at that point by the tour's third go-around: an emo band called Javert's Jump, in reference to the character from Les Miserables; and a pop-punk band called Static Bastard.
Javert's Jump was typical emo: five boys with their hair dyed darker than it's supposed to be and clad in jean jackets, tight pants and Converse tennis shoes, crooning (not singing; crooning) about lost girlfriends or boyfriends, cheating parents, unrequited love... and the occasional 'Getting-up-Again' song from their frontman, Skittery Perry, who firmly believed in going on with life even if it sucked hardcore.
Static Bastard was a bit more fun: these four boys wrote fast-paced songs about a fast-paced lifestyle based on sex, beer and drugs. Their colorful hair, baggy clothes and dirty mouths caused plenty of juicy scandal for the papers and magazines to harp on. Not that Static Bastard really cared about that.
This would be the two bands' third time touring together.
Even after all that time (or maybe because of it), they hated each other.
"Well, here they come boys!" Blink Francis crowed from inside one of the trucks he and the other members of Static Bastard were loading. "Just as half-witted as ever."
The boys of Javert's Jump shot him a glare, and he shrugged. "What? Not like I'm lyin'."
Itey Ritter, a curly haired boy with glasses that didn't suit him, scowled. "Not like we care," he mocked. "Freedom of speech includes the freedom to dress as we please."
"It also means," Spot Conlon said with a grin, "that we can say what we want about the way you dress. Freedom of speech is a two-way road."
"Hey!" Pie Eater Ingress cried, coming out from the truck. "That'd be a good song! 'Freedom of Speech is a Two Way Road.' Think you can work up some lyrics for that'un, Snitch?"
Damien 'Snitch' Listek, sitting on the edge of the truck with a cigarette in his fingers, grinned. "Freedom of Speech is a two-way road/ if you call Dubya 'dumb', we can call Howard Dean a 'toad'... yeah, I think I can. Just gimme a few days and you'll have it, Pie."
Specs Kraus raised an un-dyed eyebrow. "A couple fashion-tips, boys," he said. "First off, Blink: Mohawks have been out since the eighties."
Blink's own eyebrows furrowed. "It looks good! What the hell you talkin' about?"
"Pie Eater, no one wears aviator glasses anymore, and brown leather just isn't you."
Pie pouted, taking off his sunglasses and sulkily placing them in his pocket.
"Spot, get clothes that fit. Baggy went out in '98, hon."
Spot muttered something that sounded suspiciously similar to "Duck two bag."
"And Snitch... you're also still living in the eighties. What's with the sideburns and goatee? And that hat.. hon, the brim goes in the front."
Snitch's face was bright red, and his thick eyebrows were down as much as they would go. "Hey, y'know what? Fuck you."
Specs grinned. "Fantastic comeback, hon."
"And don't call me 'hon'!" Snitch protested hotly. "I'm not like you!"
"Like me?" Specs looked over his shoulder at the other members of Javert's Jump. "He's not like me? Whatever does he mean by that?!"
Snitch bit his lip, his fists clenching as he tried to keep his temper in tact. "Keep loading guys," he told his band. "Ignore them. At least we're working hard out here, while they sit in their trailer and dye each other's pubes."
The boys of Javert's Jump exchanged grins, knowing they had won. When they were sure no more insults were goin to be tossed their way, they moved on to their trailer.
All but one.
Skittery Perry stayed behind, quietly watching Static Bastard load their truck. In his last interview before the tour, he had come out as gay to the interviewer; the article hadn't been printed yet, but that didn't keep Skittery from watching. Especially Snitch. That boy had a set of biceps on him. Yum.
"Hey," he said as Snitch lugged a large speaker up the ramp. "Hey, man, I'm sorry."
Snitch dropped the speaker and wiped his forehead with his wrist. "Sorry? For what?" His eyes narrowed. "If this is a set-up for more insults, you can just leave."
"It's not..." Skittery blinked. "I'm just sorry."
Snitch raised his eyebrows. "For what Specs said? It's no big." He cocked his head to the side. "We're used to you guys by now."
Skittery put his hands in his pockets. "Specs isn't as fashion-savvy as he likes to think."
"And I care because...?"
The emo-boy shuffled his feet. "... Sideburns are back. And the backwards cap never left."
Snitch hopped out of the truck and stood in front of Skittery, looking mildly surprised, but saying nothing.
"And Blink's mohawk is discreet," Skittery continued, "so it's good. Y'know? It doesn't stick up a foot in the air or is dyed electric blue or something like that. It's cool."
"Why are you doing this?" Snitch asked, his eyes dull and suspicious.
Skittery chewed on his lower lip, looking cautiously at the ground. "I've... been thinking."
"Must've been difficult."
That comment was ignored. "Y'know, this feud between Javert's Jump and Static Bastard kinda goes against the point of World Clash Tour, doesn't it?"
Snitch furrowed his eyebrows and licked his lips. "I guess it does... but it's fun too, y'know?"
"Is it?" Skittery blinked. "I always thought it was tense and uncomfortable."
Snitch stared at him for a moment. "Maybe... kinda... but the battle and crossovers were always fun."
Snitch wrinkled his nose. "Pessimist."
"I am." Skittery looked up at Snitch. "I'm sorry, but I am. I want the feud to end. Now."
"Well, just you and me deciding to end it won't really end it. Blink, Spot and Pie aren't as open to change as I am."
Skittery smiled, and Snitch realized that it was the first time he'd ever seen this boy do so. "But you want the feud to end? That's what you're insinuating."
"Guess I do."
"All right then. You and I can set the example." Skittery stuck out his hand. "You and I won't fight anymore. With each other or each other's bandmates."
Snitch looked at the perfectly manicured hand being offered to him. Skittery was tall, pale, with a lined face. His cheeks were high and his lips thin. He wore the same geeky glasses that his friends wore, and donned the same dark, tight jeans, chunky belt and tight t-shirt. It was all so... conformist. He was definitely not the type of guy an anarchist punk like Snitch wanted to be seen with.
But behind those geeky glasses was a set of gorgeous blue-green eyes... and those tight jeans hugged a great ass.
Not that he found Skittery attractive. Oh, hell no.
But he shook Skittery's hand anyway.
"Houston! Are you ready for a rockin' night of music?!"
The crowd screamed and bellowed its response. Snitch stood backstage, tuning his guitar.
"Hey, Snitch." He looked up. Skittery stood in front of him. "When do you guys go on?"
"After Kelly," Snitch replied, referring to Kelly Clarkson, who had taken Christina Aguilera's place as pop queen the previous year. "You?"
"Just before Martina."
"That's good. I'd hate to go right after her; she's a tough act to follow."
"Yeah, 'specially since she's supposed to sing Concrete Angel."
Snitch nodded. "Yeah."
A mild silence. Skittery grabbed his own guitar and started to tune it, if only to have something to do.
Snitch glanced at him. "Skittery?"
"What are you doing here?"
"Tuning my guitar."
"You could do that over there," -he pointed to another backstage corner, where the rest of Javert's Jump was hanging around- "with your band. You don't have to do it here."
"Look, we agreed to a truce, not a friendship."
Skittery stared at him, hard. "Isn't that the next step after a truce?"
Snitch's eyes narrowed. "What is up with you?"
The emo boy looked at his grass-green Converse shoes. "I... well..."
Snitch turned around. Victor Parajo, the tour's director, was motioning to him. "C'mon, we gotta get your instruments and stuff hooked up! Let's go!" Victor blinked at Skittery. "You're with the emo band? Start getting your group together. You go on in an hour and a half."
Skittery looked at Snitch. "Come to my band's trailer after the show. We gotta talk."
Snitch glanced over his shoulder at Victor, then turned and nodded at Skittery. "All right. See you then."
Skittery smiled. "Break a leg."
After a slight hesitation, Snitch smiled back.
After the show, the other members of Javert's Jump went out drinking to celebrate their kick-off performance. Snitch's band was loading the truck, yet again, and seemed too busy trying to understand their Hispanic helpers to know when Snitch sneaked off and when Skittery greeted him without question.
Skittery had apparently just gotten out of the shower; his hair was wet and a white towel was draped around his neck. "You actually showed. I'm surprised," he admitted, giving a slight smile. "I thought you'd ditch."
Snitch shrugged, walking inside. "It was either this or loading the truck. And I'm way too exhausted to load the damn truck."
"Yeah... okay. You want something to drink, then?"
"You got Coke?"
"That's good." Snitch smiled again. "Can I sit?"
"Sure." Skittery moved to the refrigerator, his bare feet making slapping sounds on the linoleum floor. "You guys had a good show."
"You saw it?"
"Naw, I was backstage. But I heard it. And I heard the applause." He pulled two glasses from a cupboard. "You guys got some good songs. What's the one about the pen and the electric massager?"
Snitch's grin grew. "'And That's Why Girls Don't Masturbate.' It's Spot's favorite."
Skittery poured the Coke into the cups, then turned, his eyebrows tilted with surprise. "You guys sing about that kind of thing?"
"Yeah. It's fun."
"Is that all you sing about?" Skittery asked, handing Snitch his cup, then sitting next to him. "Sex, drugs and parties?"
Snitch grinned. "Well, that's all there is to life, isn't it?"
Skittery's eyebrows furrowed. "No. There's also heartbreak, depression, pain, unrequited love-"
"Bullshit!" Snitch started to laugh. "That's all in your head. There's no such thing as depression if you don't let it affect you."
"But pain is real-"
"Yeah, but only for a while. It doesn't last forever." Snitch sighed. "I think that's the reason our bands don't get along: we don't believe in hurt and sadness, while you guys don't believe in fun and happiness."
"We do so!"
"Yeah?" Snitch grinned. "Maybe happiness in pain and fun in cutting yourself. And that's just shitty, man."
Skittery blinked at him, then grinned sheepishly. "You're so blunt. I admire that."
Snitch grinned back, his mouth full of even, bright teeth. "Yeah? Well, that's cool."
They sat in silence for a few moments, sipping their drinks and thinking.
"So..." Snitch said finally, setting his cup on a nearby lamp table. "You wanted to talk?"
There was the slightest of movements in Skittery's face. "Ah... yeah, well... yeah."
"Ah, well... it's not important." Skittery stood up and held a hand to Snitch. "If you're done, I'll take your cup."
Snitch slowly passed his cup to Skittery, noticing as their fingers touched discreetly. "You okay, man?"
"Yeah." Skittery smiled forcefully. "I'm fine." He turned and went back to the kitchen. After a thought, Snitch followed him.
"Skittery, what's wrong?"
"Nothing! Really!" The other boy was rinsing out the cups, his back turned to Snitch. "You want something to eat? We got Girl Scout Cookies from Specs's little sister-"
Snitch grabbed Skittery's arms and whirled him around. "Skittery, I don't like people avoiding a subject. I don't like them keeping things from me. Just tell me what's wrong."
Skittery looked away. "I... don't know. We're not friends, like you said earlier, so I changed my mind. I don't think I can talk to you since you're not my friend."
Snitch cocked his head to the side. "...Oh. I... I'm sorry about that. It was right before a show, y'know? I was stressed. I'd like to try and be friends." When Skittery looked up at him, he smiled. "Really."
Skittery bit his lip and thought it over. After a moment, he smiled back. "All right. We'll be friends first. Then, we can talk."
The tour continued on to El Paso, Santa Fe, Denver, Salt Lake, Phoenix, and Reno. While the tour moved on, Snitch and Skittery grew closer. They were so different outside: Snitch with his baggy clothes, goatee, sideburns, and backwards cap versus Skittery's geek glasses without lenses, sweatervest, and Converse shoes. They even sounded different: Skittery's voice was a slow and creamy tenor, sweet like honey... while Snitch was closer to an alto range, and would have been criticized for singing off-key if his lyrics weren't so controversial that they stole all the attention.
But they had discovered something in common, the most obvious and important thing: their music. They liked different kinds of music, but it was still music in the end, wasn't it? Indeed it was. And the boys realized this.
Much to the displeasure of their bandmates, they started hanging out in each other's trailers or busses and writing songs together or just jamming out with their guitars. They enjoyed each other's company, and respected each other's talent. Skittery admired Snitch's way with words and lyrics, and his 'screw you' attitude towards critics and angry parents. Snitch loved listening to Skittery sing, and was awed by his quick and easy way around a guitar.
By the time the tour rolled into San Francisco, those that were new to the trip believed that Snitch and Skittery had been friends forever, while veteran bands were predicting the end of the world by October.
The tour was spending three days in 'Frisco: One to set up, one to play, and one to pack up and get out of town. Snitch and the boys of Static Bastard helped with most of the set-up, but were sent back to their trailer for dinner and to rest up that evening. "You guys are part of the headline!" Victor kept saying. "What do we tell the fans if one of you breaks a foot or an arm and can't perform?!"
Snitch ate burnt popcorn for dinner and watched half of Zoolander before deciding he wanted to go to Javert's Jump's trailer for a real dinner. He grabbed his jacket, yelled good-bye to his bandmates and set out into the night.
Skittery was the only one in the trailer when Snitch arrived, and that was good; that meant no heckling insults from the asshole gallery.
"Where are your friends?" Snitch asked, hanging his jacket up by the door.
"Cruising." Skittery answered simply.
"Cruising? First of all, how'd they get Victor to let them do it do that so when we double back through Vegas I can walk the Strip... and second, why're they cruising 'Frisco?"
Skittery smiled. "First answer: Victor doesn't know. They sneaked out in Brittany-the-Effects-Coordinator's car. Second answer: Because 'Frisco is the ultimate gay community and everyone in Javert's Jump is gay."
Snitch blinked and cocked his head to the side. "Everyone?"
Skittery hesitated, then nodded.
"You never told me that."
"I didn't think it would be an issue." Skittery licked his lips. "Is it?"
Snitch blinked at him. "... Naw. I should've known, I guess."
There was an awkward silence between them before Snitch sighed. "So, whaddaya got to eat?" he asked. "I had popcorn for dinner and that sure as hell don't fill a big guy like me up."
Skittery smiled. "I got microwave dinners."
"Better than popcorn."
The boys fixed their dinners and ate them while watching The Simpsons on the nine-inch TV/VCR.
"Hey, Snitch," Skittery said, swallowing a mouthful of green beans. "I'm glad you came over. I just remembered something I wanted to ask you."
On the TV, Homer meandered through an obviously gay portion of Springfield, coming across Smithers in hot pants and roller-blades. Snitch laughed, then looked at Skittery. "What?"
"I wrote a song," Skittery said, getting up and going to a notebook on the cough. "I want you to sing it tomorrow night."
"Me?" Snitch took the notebook and flipped through it to the last page with writing. "Why me?"
"'Cause it's not exactly the type of song that Javert's Jump would sing... but it's perfect for Static Bastard." Skittery shifted on his feet, a blush tinting his forehead. "Read it."
Snitch tugged on the brim of his cap as he read, and laughed out loud. "Aw, man, Cole! I love it!"
"So you'll sing it tomorrow night?!" Skittery beamed.
Snitch, still sniggering, passed it back. "I can't. It doesn't apply to me."
Skittery smiled slyly. "It doesn't?"
"No." Snitch frowned. "It don't."
Skittery, still looking shifty, looked at Snitch under his eyelashes. "Snitch, just admit it." He stepped over to Snitch and placed himself in the punk boy's lap. "It does."
Snitch, blushing as Skittery slid his arm around his shoulders and laid his head down over the gray cap Snitch always wore, sputtered. "How would you know?"
"It's so obvious." Skittery lifted his head and grinned. "I can feel you moving down there."
Snitch blushed darker and said nothing.
"Jeez, Snitch," Skittery continued, shaking his head. "You and those bungholes in Static Bastard are the only ones that don't know about you."
Snitch leaned back in his chair, but remained silent.
The blue-eyed singer looked up. Skittery smiled at him, took his hand, and draped it over one of his own thighs. He left his own hand over it, and stroked Snitch's fingers lightly. Snitch looked ready to pull away... but changed his mind after a moment. "... Yeah, Cole?"
Skittery lifted Snitch's fingers in both hands and kissed his knuckles.
"Sing the song."
"All right, bastards!" Snitch cried into the microphone the following night. "I got a surprise for ya!"
The crowd, so many invisible shadows, cheered, shaking their signs, shirts, and bras at him. Snitch had learned from experience that there were very, very few people that only like one genre of music. The others were happy with just about anything, as long as it was certain artists or certain songs.
"It's a new song. A friend wrote it for me, Mr. Skittery Perry. I think you know him."
A few people screamed, shocked and delighted that Skittery and Snitch had done a project together; a punk song written by an emo boy and performed by the punk's band? How awesome!
"He and I came up with the music last night, and now-" he gave an electric shriek with his guitar "-I'm gonna show ya'll what frightening things happen when emo meets punk!"
The crowd cheered, excited at the prospect of being the first to hear Snitch Listek sing a song written by Skittery Perry.
Pie, looking slightly sullen, tapped out a quick rhythm on his drumset as Snitch worked his way into the chords he and Skittery had decided on.
"Why is it that whenever
I see you
I can feel my skin move
Toes to hair"
The audience loved it. The emo kids were bouncing their heads and tapping their feet, seemingly unaware of these facts; everyone seemed pleasantly surprised that an emo boy like Skittery could write lyrics punked out enough for a boy like Snitch.
"When you walk by I can smell
I get a huge hard-on 'cause
Damn you're fine
Want you to be mine."
The crowd shrieked with delight when Skittery, standing out from the Static Bastard boys in his preppy-punk clothes and geek glasses, sauntered onto the stage. He bowed at his cheering fans, then at Snitch, who laughed at him. Skittery lifted a microphone to his lips and twisted his smooth voice with Snitch's as they sang the bridge:
"The only reason I can't talk straight to you
Is 'cause when you see me, you get a goddamn hard-on too!"
The volume of the crowd swelled, whooping and hooting. Skittery laughed out loud and swung his arm around Snitch's shoulders. After a brief hesitation, Snitch put his arm around Skittery's waist. The crowd's cheering rose another decibel.
"Because you're a guy
And so am I
And there's nothing we can do
'Cause we're in love
And that's just fine
Because who we are
And what we are
Don't matter anymore..." Snitch and Skittery held the note out, dragged the chord on, and the sea of teens and young adults shrieked, bounced, danced, cheered the boys on. A brief, tense silence from the stage, and the noise grew, dying to hear the end of the song. Snitch looked at Skittery, and both nodded. The punk boy slammed a chord on his guitar, and they finished up the song:
"So screw you if you don't like it!
Love like ours is what America is for!"
As Spot and Blink took over the main riffs, Snitch grabbed his microphone. "Take this, Britney and Madonna!" He shouted, dipping Skittery low and pressing their mouths together. The noise in the crowd rose to a deafening level, and paparazzi cameras flashed, especially when the boys' jaws started working up and down, an obvious show of vigorous macking.
When they were finished, Skittery looked a little dazed, both boys were breathing heavily, and Snitch was grinning. The crowd was on
its feet, loving the show, especially when Skittery hugged Snitch and sweetly kissed his cheek, making the punk blush pink.
They took their bows, still latched to each other, and left the stage laughing, the rest of Static Bastard following behind.
While they were celebrating backstage, they heard Michelle Branch take the stage.
"Well," she said, giggling nervously, "that's a tough act to follow!"
After the show ended, Snitch and Skittery sat out on the gravel in lawn-chairs, a cooler between them, watching the vague stars and listening to the sounds of the city.
"They took pictures," Skittery said softly. Snitch reached over and took his hand.
"So? They took pictures of Britney and Madonna too. No one cares anymore except for Bible-thumpers and rednecks."
"I thought you were a redneck."
"Nope." Snitch reached into the cooler and pulled out a bottle of beer. He deftly opened it on the arm of his chair. "Just born in a redneck region."
Skittery laughed slightly. "They'll say we did it for attention. For publicity."
Snitch squeezed his hand. "They'll learn they're wrong."
More silence. A car alarm sounded somewhere in the distance.
"You didn't have to kiss me," Skittery commented.
"Spur of the moment," Snitch responded, drinking his beer. "It was nice though."
"You got hard from it."
"Only a little!"
Skittery chuckled softly. "I was joking. You just gave yourself away, hon."
"My bad," Snitch said, smiling guiltlessly.
They sat there in silence, like a photograph, their hands clasped, the only movement in Snitch sipping his beer.
"It was fun doing that," Snitch murmured. "Shall we do it again?"
"The kiss or the song?" Skittery teased.
Snitch thought it over. "Both," he laughed.
"Let's get Victor to approve the song for the rest of the tour," Skittery suggested. "As for the kiss... let's go inside and see what happens."
Snitch laughed and they both stood up. The punk boy stretched loudly upwards, his shirt lifting and his baggy pants slipping, revealing a happy trail starting at his navel and ending somewhere hidden beneath red silk boxers.
Skittery watched this, fascinated. "...Snitch..."
"I have a confession."
Skittery started to walk inside, blushing. "The whole reason I tried that truce at the beginning was because I've been attracted to you since the very first time I saw you. I was sick of pretending to hate you just because my bandmates did."
Snitch grinned and stuck his hand down Skittery's back pocket, giving a friendly squeeze. "That's why you wanted to have that talk earlier on this year, huh?"
Skittery leaned into him and nodded.
"Well, y'know what? I think I've liked you for just as long. I just preferred pretending 'cause I didn't want anyone to even suspect I liked guys. But if liking guys means I get to kiss boys like you? I don't think I mind too much."
Skittery laughed and they walked into the trailer, ignoring the heckling members of Javert's Jump, and heading straight for Skittery's bedroom.
The San Francisco Chronicle - SF Gate
Music Picks - World Clash Tour 2006
((The following was written beneath a large color photo of Damien Listek and Colby Perry making out on stage.))
True love knows no boundaries?
These members of Static Bastard and Javert's Jump (Damien 'Snitch' Listek and Colby 'Skittery' Perry) seem to have gotten caught up in the San Francisco spirit. Last night, the two boys, both twenty-two, unveiled a new song, written by Perry with music by Listek, titled 'What America is For'. The song, sure to cause controversy when released as a single, is about two boys, their love for each other, and how they don't care what anyone thinks about their relationship.
Listek and Perry seem to have the same morals, as is proved by the above picture.
Rumor has it that this relationship (if a relationship at all; the kiss may be as much for publicity as Britney and Madonna's in the MTV '03 Music Video Awards) has a Romeo and Juliet feel to it: Listek comes from the pop-punk band Static Bastard, best known for its controversial songs like Blondes Give Better Head and The Prostitute with AIDs, and their devil-may-care attitude. Perry is located in emo's newest pride, Javert's Jump, which has released hits like Blood on my Fingers and Bridge to Hell. The two bands have been rivals in the charts for the past year, and have supposedly hated each other for even longer.
Apparently, not anymore.
Start thinking up nicknames, people; the way San Francisco is buzzing, these boys could be the next Bennifer.